Existential Threats

The World Economic Forum, not an organization easy to rock the establishment, summarizes a speech by pundit Yuval Harari at this year’s meeting with the title “Read Yuval Harari’s blistering warning to Davos in full”. Choice quotes:

Three problems pose existential challenges to our species …:

  • nuclear war,
  • ecological collapse and
  • technological disruption.

Technology risks dividing the world into wealthy elites and exploited “data colonies”.

Those who fail in the struggle against irrelevance would constitute a new “useless class” – people who are useless not from the viewpoint of their friends and family, but useless from the viewpoint of the economic and political system.

… some corporations and governments will be able to systematically hack all the people. We humans should get used to the idea that we are no longer mysterious souls – we are now hackable animals.

We are facing philosophical bankruptcy. The twin revolutions of infotech and biotech are now giving politicians the means to create heaven or hell, but the philosophers are having trouble conceptualizing what the new heaven and the new hell will look like.

The global order is now like a house that everybody inhabits and nobody repairs. It can hold on for a few more years, but if we continue like this, it will collapse.

Agree or disagree, go read the whole thing.

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